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International Family Law

In the 21st century, many individuals and families move across borders to immigrate to new countries or to reside there temporarily for work, study or military service. When a potential family problem arises, they need an attorney with international experience who will understand and consider the home culture as it is relevant in a United States Court and the law of the home country as a potential forum.

Family law issues can and do cross borders.

As family law attorneys experienced with international issues, we can help to prevent problems before they occur by exploring options in all of the jurisdictions involved and taking available precautionary measures. If a problem already exists, we will strategize and coordinate with local counsel in the other country to implement available remedies.

Potential international issues with which Berner Klaw & Watson lawyers can help you include, but are not limited to:

  • drafting prenuptial agreements valid across borders or, where necessary, preparing separate agreements valid in the relevant jurisdictions which recognize them;
  • clarifying the status of a marriage or a divorce occurring in another country for purposes of a new marriage or immigration to the United States;
  • seeking permission to or preventing children from visiting or relocating to another country;
  • preventing international child abduction, seeking the return of a child using both international treaties and the laws of the local jurisdiction, or defending against a request that a child be returned to another country pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Prevention of International Child Abduction;
  • determining where a divorce can occur and where it is most advantageous to file;
  • assessing whether support for spouses or children is available and pursuing it where possible;
  • asserting the rights of military personnel stationed overseas; and
  • serving spouses in other countries with court documents in a way that will ensure a valid result in United States family court cases of all types.